Isn’t it wonderful when you reconnect with old friends after time and life has gotten in the way? I met Katie nearly 15 years ago….when I was fresh out of college, working my first ‘real’ career kind of job. It was during this time period that I was a voracious reader. I read novel after novel, back when Oprah used to have her logo on all the new soft cover books at Barnes & Noble. I had already graduated college, and a lot of my friends were not readers, so I didn’t really have anyone to talk to about all of these books. So I’ll admit something pretty nerdy here (what am I trying to hide, it’s a known fact that I’ve always been a nerd trying to fake it in a cool world). One night, after I finished another novel in the wee hours of the morning, I sat at my computer and chatted back and forth in a chatroom (remember those??!!) about the novel’s ending or character development or lack of description or whatever. And I wished I had someone in real life to chat with about these things. Someone who liked to read for more than just a beach distraction. I googled ‘Book Club’ and wouldn’t you know it, Oprah’s website came up with a link that said ‘find your local book club.’ It was here that I found my book club and Katie, who had been in the club for a while already when I joined. We met on the 2nd Tuesday of every month, so naturally the club had the very creative title “Tuesday Night Book club”. It’s funny–I joined the club looking for some fellow readers to be able to talk about books, but it ended up that we usually read the books and spent the majority of the time talking about our lives. The members of the club were an entire range of ages and at different points in their lives: some were retired, some were just starting their families with new babies, and others, like myself and Katie, were young little babies themselves. I loved Katie from the very first meeting. She is so intelligent, but so warm and inviting. When she talked about a book that she loved, even if you had not read it yourself, you felt the need to get a copy and start it that very day, almost the same as when someone describes the most delicious dessert when you aren’t really hungry and then convinces you to order cheesecake even though you had no intention of quitting your diet minutes before. We attended the book club together for years, and so we also shared bits and pieces of our lives together. I remember when she first reported back to us after various dates, and then I remember the different sparkle that showed up in her eyes when she started dating Stephen. It was a whirlwind and she was so very happy. I went to her wedding with my new boyfriend at the time (who later became my husband). It was one of our best dates; we both still remember it so well. Even now, when I spoke to my husband about going to this photo shoot, I said, “I’m so excited I get to photograph Katie, you remember Katie, my book club friend, the wedding we went to and had such an amazing time?” As time has passed, Katie and her husband have traveled the world for his work. We haven’t kept in close touch, but social media has at least allowed us to see each other’s life events, and I’ve enjoyed seeing her adventures while living in Europe and then later in Texas. She still comes back to visit Arizona to see family and friends, so when she planned this family photo shoot for her recent trip, I was so thrilled. Seeing her again was wonderful, and it’s the first time I got to meet Carter, who is almost the same age as my little Kathryn. Carter is the coolest kid. I asked Katie if she wanted me to photoshop his front tooth, where he has a little darkening from a bruise he got after encountering a bathroom counter with a grudge. She decided to ask him what his preference was. His response? “Nope, just leave it, it’s part of me.” Tell me you don’t love him after reading that?! Sigh.
Anyway, enough chit chat. I wanted to describe Katie before I shared her family photos because I wanted you to know how beautiful she is on the inside before you see how beautiful she is on the outside. Ok? Ok.
I hope you enjoyed her photos as much as I enjoyed taking them. Loved seeing you, Katie and Stephen! (and Carter too!)